Tabletop RPG Review: The Gongfarmer’s Almanac 2015

As anyone reading this blog will know, I’ve gone kinda Dungeon Crawl Classics-crazy this year.  I’ve been digging its DIY vibe and nothing captures that more than The Gongfarmer’s Almanac.  This is all fan-generated content that has been produced on online platforms and made available free to download or at-cost to get print-on-demand from Lulu.  So, what’s in it?  A whole pile of different things.  

There are some new player classes.  In this volume, they’re undead.  I’m actually giving serious thought to using the Skeleton Warrior in my game.  I think it would be a blast to have the PCs go through some undead temple or something and kill the lich or whatever that’s in charge.  When it dies, surviving Skeleton Warriors find themselves free from its sway.  Now, what are they going to do?  “Uh, hey…so, can we come with you?”  It would be interesting to see a Skeleton Warrior try to survive in a hostile world, travel with other companions, and get up to the normal PC funny business.

There are new patrons and gods for Wizards and Clerics, new creatures, spells, and magic items.  There are a few adventures, including at least one that seems like it’s probably more for Mutant Crawl Classics, but not necessarily.  There are also some suggested house rules for various things, including ‘bleeding out.’  I really liked The Crawling Castle of Grumblethorn, which features a chart to help you make stranger locations.  Tales of Travels, Trials & Chance Meetings is another cool part which puts some creative control in the hands of players.

Will I use all of this?  No.  Will I be raiding various parts for my game?  Heck yeah.  Did it inspire me to come up with some of my own stuff?  Absolutely.  Call me a convert.

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